BELLI ACHE FRANK LAMPARD has revealed he tried to take Jude Bellingham and Declan Rice to Chelsea during his time in charge at Stamford Bridge.
The duo are expected to be part of the England line-up for much of the World Cup – with Mason Mount making up the midfield trio
Frank Lampard is currently Down Under with Everton.
Jude Bellingham and Declan Rice are set to star for England in Qatar.
Yet the trio could have been playing together at club level too if Lampard had got his way during his 18 months at the helm in West London.
The former England midfielder – now in charge of Everton – is a big fan of Borussia Dortmund’s highly-rated youngster Bellingham.
He told KEEPUP: “He’s crucial for England – an outstanding talent.
“He’s more experienced and talented than his years show – to do what he’s done at the top level already.
“I tried to sign him when I was at Chelsea actually – unfortunately it didn’t happen but I wanted to sign him and Declan Rice.
“That’ll be England’s midfield probably during this tournament.”
“There’s a lot of expectation so we’ll have to be a bit steady with him but the way he’s played and performed, he has a real maturity about him.
“Not much will faze him so I expect him to go and have a good tournament.”
Meanwhile Lampard expects England to go well at the World Cup – but knows the competition is likely to be fierce.
He said: “It’s a talented squad and we should appreciate and congratulate Gareth on what he’s done in the job.
“To get to a semi final and final – if that brings expectation then good.
“But you look at other teams like Brazil and Argentina squads, full of talent. European teams who have done it recently like France and Germany.
“You look at it in a balanced way and think ‘we trust and believe in this England team’ and we know we have a lot of good players – but this is a World Cup and a lot of nations are strong.
“We’re all England fans and we want to go a long way. If we build momentum, get through the group then I’m sure they have the talent to live up to expectations.
“What that ends up being, I don’t know.”